Saturday, 31 December 2016

Looking Back On 2016


Looking Back On 2016

As 2016, the year that I think we've all unequivocally agreed has been a strange and sometimes scary one, comes to a close, I thought that I would put together a little list of things that happened to me this year, good and bad. So let's take a trip down memory lane...

2016 was the year I;

discovered and then went a little crazy in Kate Spade New York - up until this year I'd only dabbled with the Kate Spade New York brand when it came to their stationery. But after stumbling across and falling head over heels in love with this particular print, I knew that this year would be the year that I took the plunge and bought my first Kate Spade handbag. Little did I know that I would then buy a purse, in the same stunning print, a watch (thanks to TJ Maxx's incredible discount), a bag that resembles a cat and the perfect everyday bag (as seen here), which ended up at just $70/£50 in the Kate Spade outlet. It's safe to say, we've only just begun when it comes to Kate Spade New York.

finally started YouTube - after years of saying that I would, this year I started up my YouTube channel. I made a handful of videos before heading on holiday to Florida in September/October, more on that below and then never got back into it. I'm blaming the fact that it gets dark here in Scotland at about 2pm these days and the madness that is Christmas, on my bit of a break from YouTube. I have a million ideas for potential videos but no real way of making the dreams a reality just yet. Does anyone want to be my photographer/videographer for the day?

attended the Queen's garden party - this was a special moment this year. Not only did I get to dress up, travel through to Edinburgh and eat more afternoon tea than is probably advised, I also got to spend the day with my parents and celebrate my Mum who had been invited by our First Minister here in Scotland, Nicola Sturgeon. The whole day was really lovely and it's one that I'll never forget.

met Charlotte Tilbury - from the actual Queen to the Queen of makeup, Charlotte Tilbury. When the opportunity arose to attend a Charlotte Tilbury makeup masterclass at Glasgow's newly opened House Of Fraser counter, I couldn't have replied to the email any quicker. So you can imagine my absolute excitement and shock when Charlotte herself walked through the door to hold the masterclass. She was just as amazing as she seems on YouTube/TV and even complimented me on my makeup and hair! It was quite a surreal experience but I've tried to sum it up in this blog post.

made the switch to non-padded bras - now this might seem like a bit of a weird one but even after being measured on a regular basis, bras just didn't quite fit me properly and would always go weirdly baggy when I was in certain positions. I took a gamble and bought a silky non-padded bra in the M&S sale this Summer and ever since then I've never looked back. Rosie Huntington Whiteley, you are a goddess! Okay, so that's already pretty well documented but your Rosie for Autograph range is the best! Also, thanks for the Twitter shout-out this year Rosie!

interned at No.1 Magazine - for as long as I can remember I've always wanted to work at a magazine. Maybe it has something to do with the fact that I was so enamoured with Ugly Betty and The Devil Wears Prada. Or maybe it has something to do with the fact that I spent all of my pocket money, growing up, on my favourite magazines. This year I joined the No.1 Magazine team for a couple of weeks and even had the opportunity to contribute an entire page in the latest issue. I also wrote several pieces for their site and did a whole lot of tweet scheduling.

finally joined the 21st century by getting an iPhone - it only took until 2016 for me to join the modern world. I went for the iPhone SE, which is the perfect size for my smaller than average hands but it does prove rather tricky when it comes to getting a nice phone case to fit. When I had an Android phone I was always so jealous of iPhone owners with their fancy phone cases but no-one seems to make ones for the SE. If anyone knows of anyone who does, please let me know.

had the best time in Orlando - as you will have already seen if you read Ellis Tuesday regularly or follow me on social media, I just had the best time in Orlando this year. I did things I hadn't done before like visiting LEGOLAND Florida and Disney Springs, visited old favourites like Universal Studios and generally ate my own body weight in food, shopped until I dropped and spent time by the pool. I'm hoping to return in 2018 to explore even more of the Sunshine State and bring back a suitcase full of American goodies.

found out I have another health issue - just when I thought I couldn't get any more annoying ailments, this year I added another one to my list. One night my feet turned bright red, became flaming hot, ballooned in size as sharp shooting pain coursed through them. For a number of weeks I struggled to walk more than a couple of metres without having to stop because of the pain. After months of waiting lists, horrible tests (I had to get electric shocks pulsed through my feet, legs, hands and arms to check my nerve conduction) and physiotherapy, I eventually found out that I have hyper-sensitive nerves in my extremities, particularly my hands and feet. Whilst I've been able to control the worst of the symptoms, my hands and feet still ache most days. Maybe 2017 will be the year that my health will improve or even stays the same... Who knows?

In comparison to last year's end of year roundup, I'm really happy with how 2016 went even if, as I mentioned above, a lot of scary and strange things were happening in the world around me.

I'm not sure I'll do a 2017 resolutions post as I've decided I'm not really the resolutions kind of gal. Instead I'll definitely be sharing a 30 before 30 kind of post as I turn 25 next year. I think as long as I follow the inspirational quotes I pin to my Pinterest boards and aim to be a better version of myself each day, that's a pretty good resolution/mantra to follow.

Let's see what 2017 has to offer...

What was 2016 like for you? Will you be making any New Year's resolutions? And it would be great to hear one thing you're looking forward to in 2017 (for me it's visiting New York for the first time)?

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Friday, 23 December 2016

The Best Of The Online Sales This Christmas


Christmas/Boxing Day Sales 2016 Best

The Christmas sales have already started online, so if you're looking to bag a bargain, now is the best time to buy!

I'll be updating this page on a daily basis over the Christmas period so be sure to check back in to see if any more of your favourite stores have started their Christmas Eve/Boxing Day/festive sales.

But let's start with the one's that are on RIGHT NOW;

Accessorize - up to 50% off
Anthropologie - up to 50% off
ASOS - up to 50% off
Beauty Bay - up 50% off
The Body Shop - up to 40% off with the code 14672
Boohoo - 50% off
Boots - up to 50% off
Clarks - up to 60% off
Debenhams - up to 50% off
Dorothy Perkins - 50% off
Feel Unique - up to 50% off
Forever 21 - up to 50% off
George at Asda - up to 50% off
H&M - up to 60% off
House Of Fraser - up to 50% off
John Lewis - up to 50% off
Look Fantastic - up to 50% off
Mango - up to 50% off
Missguided - 50% off (an additional 26% off everything with code SANTA26)
Miss Selfridge - up to 50% off
New Look - up to 70% off 
Next - up to 50% off
Oasis - up to 50% off
Office - up to 50% off
Oliver Bonas - up to 50% off
Paperchase - up to 50% off
River Island - up to 50% off
Selfridges - up to 50% off
Space NK - up to 50% off
Topshop - up to 50% off (secret at this moment ie. not been publicised - get in there quick!)
Urban Outfitters - up to 50% off
Whistles - up to 70% off
Zalando - up to 60% off

I've already channeled my inner Rebecca Bloomwood and placed quite a few orders this morning! I have a feeling that we may need to freeze my credit card at some stage too...

Are you a fan of sale shopping? Have you got your eye on anything that you're hoping will go into the sale? And are you a bit of a bargain hunter?


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Sunday, 18 December 2016

What's On My Christmas List This Year


Blogger Christmas List 2016

As it's only ONE WEEK (how did that happen?!) until Christmas Day, I thought that I would share some of the things I'd be absolutely over the moon to receive under the Christmas tree this year. As always, it's an eclectic mix and I in no way expect to receive even half of these gifts this year. It does mean, however, that I can go shopping with my Christmas money when the sales start on Boxing Day to pick up some of the pieces that don't make their way under the tree on the 25th though.

So here's what's on my Christmas list this year;

Oasis Leopard Print Dress (£60) - When two of my favourite styles (leopard print and midi length) collide to form one spectacular piece, there's no wonder that I've been lusting after this dress ever since. £60 is a little steep for me to buy it myself on a whim but receiving it as a gift would make it much more special than it already is.

River Island Glitter Mini Chain Bag (£18) - How can you say no to a little glittery cross body bag, particularly at this time of year? Answer: I can't. I feel like it would add so much to any outfit and make me smile on even the earliest and greyest of mornings.

Topshop Copper Boots (£39) - You know when a pair of boots just speak to you, not literally of course, that would be silly but they almost call your name out as you walk on by, that's exactly what happened with these beautiful copper coloured boots. Again, I feel like they'd add a pop of fun to any outfit, whether I'm in all black or even some shade or variation of leopard print.

Accessorize Leopard Print Camera Bag (£19) - Talking of leopard print, how brilliant is this leopard print camera bag from Accessorize? This is my ideal size of bag, when it comes to everyday wear, as there's enough room for the essentials as well as my camera, which I'm trying to take out with me more to hopefully start vlogging. Watch this space!

Topshop Hangry Like The Wolf Pyjamas (£22) - These are basically the best pyjamas I've ever seen! I mean, what a pun! And as someone who can often blur the line between hungry and hangry if I've not been fed, these couldn't be more perfect for me. I've also not been able to get 'Hungry Like The Wolf' out of my head ever since I first spied these online. Who else is looking forward to the return of warmer weather, whereby wearing a pair of shorts or a eshort sleeved t-shirt wouldn't result in them catching hypothermia?

Charlotte Tilbury Magical Mini Brush Set (£45) - As expected, there's at least one Charlotte Tilbury related Christmas gift on my list this year, after meeting her back in October. This mini brush set contains everything I'm really looking for in my makeup brushes and how dreamy is the little clutch that it comes with?

NYX Wanderlust Lip & Eye Collection (£15) - Who knew NYX did ready made palettes/collections like this one? I've been meaning to try some of NYX's eyeshadows for a while now and this looks like the easiest way to do so. I'm also completely in love with the shades in this particular collection.

The Conjuring 2 DVD (£10) - As you may know, if you've been reading Ellis Tuesday for a while now, or follow me on social media, I love a good horror film and one of my absolute favourites is The Conjuring. For some reason I never got around to seeing the sequel, The Conjuring 2, when it was on at the cinema so receiving it on DVD would truly make my day/Christmas.

Birkenstock Arizona Copper Sandals (£79.50) - Last Summer I practically lived in my Hotter Tourist sandals and as a result, it completely changed the way that I thought about footwear, particularly in the warmer months. Before I would just grab a £4 pair of sandals from Primark and expect them to last me all Summer. They would inevitably tear my feet to shreds and I'd wonder why. As I get older I'm starting to realise that you get what you pay for and even though £80 seems like a lot for a pair of sandals, I know that I'd get so much wear out of these copper sandals. As I'm also heading to New York next year, I have a feeling these could/would help me walk miles with ease. What do you think?

Lucifer Soft Toy (£18.95) - And last but not least, we have this incredible soft toy from The Disney Store. Do you ever transform back into your four year old self upon walking into a Disney Store? That's exactly what happened when I saw this mischievous cat from Cinderella sitting on the shelf in-store. He's been a bit of a nightmare to find this month as he's been out of stock both online and in-store but suprisingly we managed to find him in time for me to unwrap on Christmas morning. Can you tell that I'll be waking up on the 25th as excited as I would have been about 20 years ago? Hehe.

What's on your Christmas list this year? What do you think of what's on mine? And what are you looking forward to most about Christmas Day?

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Thursday, 15 December 2016

Last Minute Gift Ideas For Beauty Lovers


Last Minute Gift Ideas For Beauty Lovers Christmas

It's official; there's only ten (YES TEN!) days left until Christmas Day and if you haven't finished or even started your Christmas shopping yet, I'm here to help. If you're buying for someone who likes their beauty products, then this is the Christmas gift guide for you! And with ten days to go, there's still plenty of time for you to order and receive your gifts well in advance of December 25th.

So let's not waste any time and get right into it;

Skincare Gift Ideas Christmas

As I've mentioned in previous gift guides, gift sets are one of the best ways to gift beauty and fragrance at this time of year and I really love the fact that many brands do exclusives, ones that you'll only find during the festive period, as well as many of them being great value for money.

When it comes to skincare nugg have got you covered. Their Winter Glow Kit* includes six face masks, all of which come packaged in this handy little tube and if you're looking for the perfect skincare stocking filler or Secret Santa present, their Christmas Stocking Duo* is the one to buy. Dermalogica also have some fantastic festive gift sets, including this incredible Power Rescue Masque Trio*. You get three of their best masques (the Charcoal Rescue masque, the MultiVitamin Power Recovery Mask and the Skin Hydrating Mask), which would ordinarily amount to £60 for almost £20 less and in a snazzy Christmas gift box.

And if skincare is their thing, they simply need the Magnitone BareFaced Cleansing Brush*! If you buy one thing to transform your skincare routine, this year this is it. I've raved about Magnitone's cleansing brushes in the past and for good reason. And how stunning is this rose quartz edition? You'll also find it in precious gold, if pink's not their thing. And Look Fantastic currently have it down from £70 to £50 on their site so I'd be sure to act fast on that kind of offer!

If the person you're buying for this year loves their makeup brushes or is looking to finally build up a collection of great ones, then you must check out Makeup Revolution's limited edition Iconic Nudes Brush Collection and Real Technique's Bold Metals Collection Spotlight Essentials set. The quality of both are out of this world and they're also really budget friendly too, which is always a bonus. As is the fact that both come in easy to wrap boxes.

If lips are more their thing (aka. have you heard them mention Kylie Jenner's Lip Kits this year?), then here are my top picks for Christmas gifts this year;

Makeup Gift Ideas Christmas

Benefit's Kissy Missy set is one of the best out there at the moment as it includes their brand new They're Real! Double The Lip products and minis of the iconic Benetint and Lolitints. And you can't go wrong with Burt's Bees. Their gingerbread lip balm is to die for and their Endless Shine trio* would work well for a whole host of different people. Talking of lip gloss, Seventeen always come out with really great gifts at Christmas (see my The Best Makeup Palettes To Buy This Christmas post for more evidence of this) and their Sparkle + Shine collection would make a great stocking filler, whether you keep it as one gift or separate the lip glosses into separate stockings and present piles.

And who wouldn't want to hang one of Too Faced's spectacular Melted liquified long wearing lipsticks on their Christmas tree? I love the little Christmas decorations that they release each year and this berry shade is absolutely gorgeous on.

Bath and Body Christmas Gift Ideas

When it comes to bath and body, both Soap & Glory and Bayliss & Harding are always a safe bet! I'm a big fan of basically Soap & Glory's entire Christmas collection but this Pink Pamper set* has to be one of my favourites, as it has everything you need plus more. And Bayliss & Harding's festive sets from Well pharmacy always go down well too. I love the design of their cracker set this year!

Jolly Awesome Christmas Cards Fun

Last but not least, I couldn't not include these brilliant Christmas cards from Jolly Awesome! I also now can't get 'All The Jingle Ladies' out of my head. Hehe.

Have you left your Christmas shopping last minute? What do you think of my picks in today's gift guide? And are any of these sets/brands on your Christmas list this year?

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Wednesday, 14 December 2016

What To Buy A Fragrance Fanatic This Christmas


Christmas Gift Guide Blogger Beauty

I'm back with another gift guide, this time focusing on what to buy the fragrance fanatics out there. I've got a selection of gift ideas, ones that should work for many different women, all at different price points too.

So let's get straight into it;

Best Christmas Fragrance Gift Sets

One of the easiest ways to gift fragrance at this time of year is with a fragrance gift set. Not only are they incredibly easy to wrap (I'm all about minimal effort when it comes to wrapping Christmas presents) but they're always pretty good value for money and you normally get a bonus or two in the form of a body lotion or something along those lines. You might even get a fluffy pom pom pen like you do with the Ari by Ariana Grande gift set, as seen in my What To Buy Teenage Girls This Christmas blog post.

The Paco Rabanne Olympea scent is one of my very favourite, having tried it to review it earlier in the year. The Olympea gift set* is seriously dreamy, I mean look at those rose gold/copper wings and Grecian display and the added bonus of a 100ml body lotion for less than you would usually pay for the perfume alone.

If you're buying for your Mum, wife or sister this Christmas, then this Coach gift set* would work brilliantly. Plus, it basically looks like it's already been wrapped for you with it's beautiful black bow detailing. And Ted Baker always do some great festive fragrance gift sets at this time of year and this set is no different. It's also just £6!

What to buy the women in your life this Christmas

Another three scents that are a big hit with the women in my life (my Mum, cousins and friends) are Nina Ricci's Nina perfumes and YSL Black Opium. If you haven't had the pleasure of sniffing these three fragrances yet, I can't recommend heading along to your local department store enough. World Duty Free even do a set* which includes both of the Nina Ricci fragrances together for a pretty incredible price.

Best Candles To Buy At Christmas

If the fragrance fanatic in your life is all about candles, instead, these four would make fantastic gifts. Even though you might not expect a jewellers to have their own range of candles, ROX do a beautiful rose gold candle* which just smells as beautiful as you would imagine it to. The White Company's scents always go down well and are a great way to treat yourself or someone else to a little bit of luxury, as is Molton Brown's option. Not only is it a great piece to display, especially during the festive period but it's also such a gorgeous scent. And talking of gorgeous scents and adding a festive touch to your home, Isle Of Skye's Winter Warmer* scent is the one for you.

Soap & Glory Christmas gift sets review

If like me, you're a big fan of Soap & Glory's Sugar Crush scent, then this Christmas gift set is for you! The Zing Along set* includes four full size Sugar Crush products, namely the body wash, body scrub, body buttercream and body spray and is available in Boots. It's also part of the store-wide 3 for 2, which simply sweetens the deal that much more.

Christmas gift ideas for her

And you know when you fall in love with a particular scent, so much so that you'd quite happily own absolutely everything that has said scent, well that's exactly how I feel about The Body Shop's Frosted Berries fragrance. The fact that it's only sold at this time of year also makes it a must-buy for me!

Roger & Gallet have also brought out a great little gift set, one that would make the perfect stocking filler or Secret Santa present. It includes a hand and nail cream and a little fragrance sampler.

And who doesn't love a beauty themed Christmas bauble? Last year I even dedicated a full Blogmas post to all of the incredible beauty related Christmas decorations and this year I was blown away by this one from GHOST. The bauble includes a 5ml bottle of the classic GHOST fragrance as well as a lovely little lip gloss. It's also well worth keeping the bauble and reusing it the following year or even doing a little bit of crafting to take it to the next level.

What's your favourite fragrance of all time? Or favourites, might I say? Are you a fan of Christmas gift guides? And who still hasn't finished their Christmas shopping yet (aka. me)?

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Monday, 12 December 2016

The November Degustabox (With Exclusive £7 Off Discount Code)


Degustabox Food Subscription Box UK

As a little reprieve from all things Christmas gift guides, today I'm talking Degustabox.

As with every Degustabox I review, I have a brilliant, new and exclusive, discount code which takes a massive £7 off the £12.99 price, making it better than half price. All you have to do is enter the code Z4CBJ when you register.

So let's see exactly what the November Degustabox comprises of;


November Degustabox UK

I'm always happy to see anything Ryvita related in my Degustabox so I was over the moon to find some of the Thins, in a caramelised onion flavour and the cracked black pepper crackers. They always work well as a little afternoon snack for me, to hopefully stop me from grazing on sweets, chocolate or crisps at that time of day. A little carton of apple juice also goes down well throughout the day too. And for afternoon tea, the waffle crisps and a cup of Ahmad tea are absolutely delicious.

My Mum was also happy to find a pepper sauce in this month's box, particularly as she just picked up some steaks in the M&S Dine In deal.

Degustabox Discount Code UK

I already knew that I was a fan of Butterkist's sweet cinema style popcorn but the choc mallow flavour is honestly out of this world. I might have devoured the entire pack within the space of about five minutes.

And when I'm being a little naughty, when it comes to snacking, why not go all out? The Piper Co. crisps are divine and again, don't last long once opened. The Michel et Augustin cookie square bars are unreal and such a great discovery, as are the crunchy slam dunk peanut chunks from Broderick's. And who doesn't love glitter?! The Hartley's glitter jelly adds a spot of sparkle to your table as does the glitter infused J20 drink. I might have spent a good amount of time spinning and shaking the bottle to see the glitter swirl around inside. And The Good Cider's strawberry and wild berry ciders were a big hit in our household.

Overall, another great box from Degustabox! I have a feeling that a Degustabox subscription (with £7 off your first box, of course) would go down really well as a gift this Christmas, especially if you're buying for a foodie or family.

What do you think of the November Degustaboxes? Have you tried any of the products featured in them before? If so, what do you think of them? And what do you think of gifting a Degustabox subscription this Christmas?

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Sunday, 11 December 2016

What To Buy Teenage Girls This Christmas


gifts for teenage girls

I'm back again with another one of my Christmas gift guides and today it's dedicated to buying for teenagers, particularly teenage girls. Whether you're buying for your little sister, your little cousin, your best friend or your daughter, I'm sharing some gifts that will surely make their Christmas this year.

zoella christmas

First things first, essentially if you're shopping for a teenage girl this year, I have a feeling that you can't go wrong with Zoella. Any time I take a trip to Superdrug there's always a crowd of kids and teenage girls huddled around the Zoella beauty stand and for good reason.

She's really hit it out of the park with her Christmas range this year. The gingerbread scent is really lovely and the packaging is so cute. I love the little gingerbread men emblazoned on every ginger scented product so I just had to pick up some of the range for today's blog post.

The crackers contain a body lotion, a body wash, a lip balm and a hand cream, all of which are scented with the Christmas fragrances of warm vanilla and gingerbread. And if you think you'll be a fan of those scents, then you just have to check out the gingerbread and vanilla fragrance set! It includes a body mist and a body cream, all perfectly housed in a great gift box. And I couldn't resist the bath fizz gift set either. You get three bath fizzers for £9 or £8 if you buy it from Superdrug right now. The entire Zoella Christmas range is also currently in the 3 for 2 offer on Feel Unique too.

best fragrance gift sets christmas 2016

Speaking of great gift sets. The gorgeous Ghost Girl scent comes with a lovely little purse/makeup bag that screams party season. But my favourite fragrance gift set this year has to be the Ari by Ariana Grande one. Not only does it come with a 30ml bottle of the beautiful Ari scent and a body lotion but it also comes with a brilliant pom pom pen and in a box that has a little clear window shaped like a cat. Again, as I've mentioned in previous blog posts, it's always handy when presents come in their own gift boxes as it definitely makes it that much easier to get wrapping.

If you're a fan of Ariana, you'll be happy to know that she also has another brilliant fragrance on the market; Sweet Like Candy*, which would also go down well with a whole host of teenage girls and adults too, I would imagine.

When it comes to fun little presents to add to their stockings or present pile, I've got a couple of top picks;

what to buy teenage girls this christmas

As you'll see up above and here, makeup bags always go down well and if the teenager you're buying for is anything like me, she'll be over the moon to have somewhere else to store her ever-expanding makeup collection. Superdrug have a wonderful range of makeup bags at the moment, with my personal favourites being the pink pouch with googly eyes and the rose gold/coppery one, all of which you'll find for well under a tenner.

They've also got an incredible range of products for just £1! So if you're looking for little extras to add to someone's stocking or for Secret Santa gifts, I'd definitely start at Superdrug. You'll find sweets, adorable Flutter products and even a beauty blender that comes looking like a little kitty cat. Can you tell that I'm a fan of cats?

Other great little added extras; the Dirty Works snowman crackers*, the Oh K! kitty cat clutch bag* (more cats) and the Ryan Gosling Colour Me Good Colouring Book*? I mean, who wouldn't wan't to gaze at Ryan while they're getting all mindful with their colouring?

If Gosling's not their thing, you'll also find fashion related ones, Harry Potter ones and even passive aggressive colouring books this Christmas.

What do you think of today's picks? Are you buying for anyone who'd love some of these gifts? And are you enjoying my Christmas gift guides this year?

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Saturday, 10 December 2016

Come Christmas Shopping With Me (#GlasgowLovesChristmas)


Christmas Shopping Glasgow

I may be slightly biased but Glasgow has to be the best city to shop in, particularly during the festive months. I recently caught up with some fellow bloggers to experience a full day of shopping in the City Centre to showcase all that Glasgow has to offer in the run up to Christmas when it comes to shopping, food and drinks, both of the hot and the cocktail variety.

So let's go Christmas shopping in Glasgow;
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Friday, 9 December 2016

Treating Someone/Yourself To A Little Bit Of Luxury This Christmas


Little Bit Of Luxury Christmas Gift Guide (Charlotte Tilbury, Kate Spade New York, Lord Timepieces)

Following on from the previous two (see here and here), I'm back with the third of my Christmas gift guides this year and this time it's dedicated to all things luxury. Whether you're buying for your Mum, your best friend, your wife/girlfriend/partner or even for yourself, these treats are ones that will surely go down well on December 25th. So let's get straight onto it;

When I think luxury a few brands immediately spring to mind and the first of those brands has to be Charlotte Tilbury. As you will have seen, if you've been reading Ellis Tuesday for a while or follow me on social media. you'll know just how besotted I've become with all things Charlotte Tilbury in recent months. I mean, I even got to meet her a couple of weeks ago, something I've still not fully processed. If like me, your entire Christmas list consists of Charlotte Tilbury goodies, or you know someone who who'd love to try out her range, you really can't go wrong with this incredibly dreamy gift set. It's that dreamy that it's even called The Dreamy Look In A Clutch*.

Charlotte Tilbury Dreamy Look In A Clutch

First of all, just look at that packaging! Why oh why couldn't this be a real clutch? I would honestly tote this stunning leopard print lovely with me everywhere, if it was. But I suppose I do now have the perfect place to store my ever-growing CT collection. In the clutch you'll find the extraordinary Legendary Muse palette (which is basically just the prettiest, golden hued palette that I think I'll ever own), a full size Secret Salma Hot Lips lipstick and three luxury sized minis of the Legendary Lashes, the Legendary Lip Liner in Bitten Kiss and the Legendary Eye Liner in Bedroom Black. You also get the most incredible lipstick shaped USB which comes pre-loaded with the Dreamy Look video tutorial. This means whoever you're gifting this set to will know exactly what to do with each and every one of the components and it will save them from wondering what eyeshadow shade goes with which etc. In addition to being on Charlotte's site itself, you'll also find this gift set and the entire Charlotte Tilbury range in House Of Fraser, John Lewis, Selfridges, Harvey Nichols and NET-A-PORTER.



If an entire gift set is a little out of your budget or you're looking for one standout product from CT's range, the universally lauded and applauded Goddess Skin Clay Mask is that product. If you haven't tried it yet, you are seriously missing out! All I can say is get yourself down to a Charlotte Tilbury counter asap to try this out for yourself. It's also a really nice idea for a gift due to the fact that it screams pampering and treating yourself, which is always nice when giving a gift.

Charlotte Tilbury Goddess Skin Clay Mask Review

The next brand I think of when I think of luxury has to be Kate Spade New York and it's another brand that I've become more than a little obsessed with in 2016. The iconic gold dots design is one that you really can't go wrong with and as a result, they make for such a perfect gift. The thermal mug* would be ideal for anyone who can't go without their coffee or a warm drink throughout the day and at £16 it's not too pricey but still screams luxury to me. Another great gift idea is one of the fantastic notebooks in the range. If the person you're buying for could always do with an extra notebook because they're at college, University or work or they're just a stationery fanatic like I am, why not go for this gorgeous gold dot one?

kate spade new york Polka Dot Trifold Agenda

And talking of stationery, just look at this incredible foldout agenda/desk planner from Kate Spade New York too? It literally has everything you could ever need to get your life in some kind of order, making it a brilliant idea for stepping into 2017 on the right foot. There's a well laid out weekly planner, sticky notes and a to-do list/etc. pad and it all comes housed in the stunning gold dot design that you will have seen in the top photograph.

And when I think of going into the New Year feeling more organised and ready to conquer the world, what immediately springs to mind has to be a great watch to keep you on track and on time and there isn't one that I've been more obsessed with this year than this one from Lord Timepieces*.

Lord Timepieces Watch Review

Rose gold accents and a gorgeous grey strap are what make this watch for me and at £70 it's that little bit of luxury without being a ridiculous priced a la Michael Kors watches etc. You can find plenty of women's watches at Lord Timepieces.

Who are you buying for this Christmas? Do any of these gift ideas sound right up your street? And what brands or products do you think of when you think of that little bit of luxury?

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Thursday, 8 December 2016

The Best Makeup Palettes To Buy This Christmas


Best Makeup Palettes To Buy This Christmas

As you will have seen yesterday, if you paid a visit to the blog, the first of my Christmas gift guides (specifically the one concerning buying for the men in your life), went live and today I'm back with my second gift guide to talk all about the best makeup palettes to buy this Christmas. Whether you're treating yourself or a loved one to one of these brilliant beauty buys, there's something for everyone, for all budgets and for every occasion. So let's get started;

First up we've got three palettes that you'll find at the drugstore. This makes them perfect for Secret Santa style gifting or even as rather large stocking fillers.

Best Drugstore Makeup Palettes

The Tanya Burr Baby It's Cold Outside palette is absolutely adorable and as you should be able to see from the photograph above, it just looks so pretty! Inside you'll find a blush, a highlighter and a gorgeous lip gloss. It's available from Superdrug where it's currently down to £10 and on Feel Unique, who currently have it at just £8.50 and it's part of their 3 for 2 deal (you can also save 15% off your first order on there right now, which is well worth taking advantage of if you're doing your Christmas shopping).

The next makeup palette, the Seventeen My Photo Eye Palette*, allows you to insert your very own photograph onto the front of the palette, which makes it a great gift idea for teenagers and even Secret Santa, as well. There's a combination of neutral and bold shades and I've always found the quality of Seventeen shadows to be pretty impressive, especially when you consider the price point. You'll find this palette in Boots and it's also part of the store-wide 3 for 2.

Next we come to one of my favourite beauty brands; Makeup Revolution. And they've really hit it out of the park with their Christmas gift offerings this year. The Ultimate Blush & Light & Contour set has everything you could ever want when it comes to these kinds of products and the quality is second to none when it comes to Makeup Revolution. This palette, which is normally £20 is currently down to just £10 in Superdrug and on their site. Now that's definitely a deal worth grabbing while you still can.

Next up we have two palettes that you'll find in Marks & Spencer of all places;

What To Buy A Beauty Lover This Christmas

If you've recently paid a visit to the M&S beauty hall, you'll know exactly how many incredible beauty brands, ones that you don't ordinarily see on the High Street, grace their shelves and two of the best brands they carry have to be Pixi and Rosie Huntington Whiteley's Rosie for Autograph range.

First up we have the Rosie for Autograph makeup palette. This would make many a woman smile on Christmas morning. It's also currently half price (yes HALF PRICE) in store and online, taking it to just £12.50 which is pretty fantastic. The rest of the Rosie for Autograph beauty and fragrance range is also well worth a look.

Then we have this epic palette from Pixi by Petra. Containing more eyeshadows and face products than you could ever want, this is basically an entire makeup collection in one handy palette. I also absolutely adore the festive packaging of this palette.

And last but not least we have two of the most talked about palettes to be released in recent months;

Best Makeup Palettes 2017

One of the reasons I get rather excited for Christmas, weeks, if not months, before the big day, is the fact that so many of my favourite beauty brands bring out the most incredible gift sets, limited editions and products to mark the holiday season and nobody does it better than Too Faced for me. I mean how wonderful does this palette look? I also can't get over the Christmas In New York theme either! Is this not the dreamiest makeup palette you've ever seen? You'll find absolutely beautiful macaron scented shadows and even a little luxury mini of their bestselling and brilliant Better Than Sex Mascara. In the UK you might still be able to find it at your local Debenhams or on Too Faced's site but you'll also find it exclusively in Ulta if you live in the US.

And finally we have the one eyeshadow palette that everyone has been losing it over this year; the Urban Decay Naked Ultimate Basics. An entire palette dedicated to matte shadows, ones that are so wearable and ideal for everyday wear, basically equates to the holy grail of eyeshadow palettes this year. This is definitely the one makeup palette to own full stop. You'll find it at House Of Fraser, Debenhams , Feel Unique and Sephora.

Are you a fan of any of these makeup palettes? If so, which one looks like it could be your favourite? And are you buying for any makeup fans this Christmas? If you are, which one would they love?

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Wednesday, 7 December 2016

What To Buy The Man In Your Life This Christmas


Christmas Gift Ideas For Him

There's no doubt about it, men are definitely difficult to buy for, particularly at Christmas-time. 

Do they really want or need another pair of socks, slippers or a novelty tie? The answer is most probably no. So whether you're buying for your Dad, brother, boyfriend, husband or a male colleague at work, here are some ideas for gifts that they will actually enjoy;

Christmas Gifts For Him

First things first; some classic Christmas gifts for him that will actually get used. This Paco Rabanne Invictus gift set* is great value for money and smells absolutely gorgeous. If you're looking for a scent to get the man in your life, this year, I'd definitely recommend checking this one out. The men in my household also like to keep the gift boxes from these kinds of sets to store tools, pens and loose change in. What is it about men and keeping knick-knacks in little tins and drawers all over the house? Or is that just something that happens in our household?

The OSMO Style Laid Bare Grooming Kit* contains everything a man could want or need when it comes to their hair. Again, they're products that the man you're buying for will really use, unlike that novelty gift that sounded like a good idea at the time.

Christmas Gifts For Him

From my experience, the men in my life quite like having something to build or tinker with on Christmas morning and both of these gifts will certainly allow them to do just that. If the man you're buying for this year likes his cars, motorbikes or planes then you need to check out the Haynes range of construction sets. My Dad is a big car fan so I opted for the sports car construction set*. I have a feeling his eyes will light up when he sees this and the fact that he'll have something to keep him occupied whilst we have Buble blasting and the Christmas dinner cooking on December 25th.

His other Christmas present, which he technically picked out when we were at LEGOLAND Florida in October, is this fantastic LEGO Ghostbusters set. Ghostbusters is one of his favourite movies AND there's a car involved aka. it's basically his idea of a dream present. LEGO is always popular at this time of year but it's not just for kids. 

DVDs for him for Christmas

DVDs and books are always a good shout and here are some of my top picks. Southpaw and Creed are both brilliant boxing movies. If you haven't seen Jurassic World, Black Mass or The Revenant yet, you seriously need to! Other great picks have to be Mad Max Fury Road, Batman Vs. Superman and Point Break. And this is the kind of book that your Dad, your granddad, your brother and your other half will enjoy reading.



And since virtual reality is all the rage, this headset*, which allows you to transform your phone into a VR headset is a must-buy this year. You can play games, watch movies and watch the man in your life stumble around, waving their arms about, after you exchange gifts.

What to buy your boyfriend for Christmas

Last but not least some mince pies from Walkers Shortbread (my dad's favourite) and an experience instead of an actual present that they can unwrap. I don't know about you but the older I get the more I'd rather put my money towards experiences or making memories instead of material things. Go Ape is the kind of experience that anyone would love, even if they are a little weary of heights or the great outdoors. You also get a nifty cardboard VR headset, just in case you've not already looked into the one above, making it a fun gift to receive rather than just a gift voucher in an envelope.

Which men have you to shop for this year? What do you think of my picks? And have you started your Christmas shopping yet?

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Wednesday, 30 November 2016

Frizz Free Curls With John Frieda


John Frieda Dream Curls

Despite straightening my hair to within an inch of it's life as a teenager, I'm now more than happy to embrace my natural curls and waves. so when John Frieda got in touch to ask if I'd like to be part of their Curl Collective, I was immediately intrigued and excited to take part.

Having tried some of their Frizz Ease products in the past, namely the shampoo and conditioner, I was looking forward to seeing how the selection of products that I had been sent, dealt with my newly chopped locks.

John Frieda Frizz Ease

Since my last foray into the Frizz Ease range, everything has had a complete makeover and a couple of new products have been introduced to what is now called the Dream Curls line.

The shampoo and conditioner were as good as I had remembered, which was great. They clean and hydrate the hair without it feeling like your hair is laden with lots of product.

John Frieda Frizz Ease Dream Curls

But what I was most excited about, when it came to the Dream Curls range, were the styling products.

To be totally honest, I rarely apply anything additional to my hair, other than the odd mist of hairspray, when it comes to styling products, so I was very eager to try some of these out.

Now that my hair is that bit shorter (it's collar bone length, as you will have seen if you saw/read the blog post where I met Charlotte Tilbury), my curls have hopped up, instead of being weighed down, like they are when my hair is longer. So having and using the Dream Curls styling products has made keeping those curls looking good and from falling, a reality and not a dream.

The mousse works as you would expect it to without leaving your hair feeling crispy or crunchy, like so many other hair mousses do. The calming cream is ideal for keeping real frizz at bay. The styling foam is perfect when it comes to air drying your hair. And the daily styling spray really has become a daily essential of mine. My hair feels silkier than ever and it looks so much more shinier than it normally does. I think I've found my dream haircare routine (pardon the pun) when it comes to keeping my natural curls looking and feeling great, as well as creating additional curls myself. However, I do really want to properly put the range to the test on curls like those created by the Lee Stafford Chopstick Styler. Can you tell that that's on my Christmas list this year? Hehe.

You'll find the John Frieda Frizz Ease Dream Curls range at Boots, Superdrug, Feel Unique, Amazon and most supermarkets.

Does your hair get frizzy? Or what is your main concern when it comes to your hair? And have you tried either the Frizz Ease range or the John Frieda range more generally? If so, what were your thoughts?

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Friday, 25 November 2016

What To Buy In The Black Friday/Cyber Weekend Sales & Every Code You Need


Best Black Friday/Cyber Weekend Deals UK

Unless you've been living under a rock this week or not ventured onto the High Street/opened your emails, 'tis the season to indulge in a spot of pre-Christmas shopping. And I'm here to share some of the biggest and best deals, savings and discount codes out there, ones you'll definitely want to take advantage of, as well as a few of my personal favourites.

New Look leopard print coat (was £49.99 now £37.49) | Fitbit Flex (was £79.99 now £39.99) | Little Miss Blogger mug (was £6.99 now £5.60) | Topshop velvet sandals (were £69 now £51.75) | Soap & Glory EXTRAVA-GLAM-ZA (was £50 now £25) | Kate Spade small Hayden bag (was £268 now £214.40) | Charlotte Tilbury Secret Salma Lipstick (was £23 now £20.70) | Barry M Liquid Luxe set (was £12 now £9) | Spectrum Brushes 10 piece essential set (was £39.99 now £27.99)

If you've wanted to try Spectrum's brushes, there's no better time than now as they're now less than £30 on Beauty Bay and how incredible does the Soap & Glory EXTRAVA-GLAM-ZA look?! And it's now only £25, as opposed to £50.

It's always a bonus when items you've had your eye on, namely this New Look coat, Topshop's dreamy velvet sandals and the good ol' FitBit go on sale. Where's my debit card?

And the fact that this stunning Kate Spade small Hayden bag is also on sale proves that it's not just random bits and bobs that you'll find in the sales. It's the kind of handbag that'll last you a lifetime and go with everything. Can you tell I'm obsessed with it?

If you fancy treating yourself or your loved ones with some serious savings, you'll find every code you need below;

& Other Stories - 50% off selected items
Accessorize - 30% off selected items
All Saints - 30% off with the code CYBER
Amazon - different deals each day
ASOS - 20% off EVERYTHING with the code GOGOGO
Beauty Bay - 30% off lots of amazing brands and products
The Body Shop - 40% off EVERYTHING with the code 19805 (+ FREE delivery when you spend £5)
Boohoo - up to 50% off selected items (+ next day delivery for £1.99 with the code FRIDEL)
Boots - so many Black Friday deals on everything from fragrance to gift sets and electrical items
Charlotte Tilbury - an incredible magic offer each day
Cult Beauty £5 off £50 with code BLACK5 - £15 off £100 with code BLACK15 - £30 off £200 with code BLACK30
Debenhams - different deals each day + 10% off beauty and fragrance
Dorothy Perkins - 50% off selected items
Feel Unique - different offers each day + price matching competitors
FitFlop - up to 50% off selected items
H&M - up to 50% off shoes and accessories
House of Fraser - 50% off selected items + 10% off beauty and fragrance
John Lewis - price matching competitors on brands like Charlotte Tilbury, Olivia Burton and many more
Kate Spade New York (at House Of Fraser) - 20% off
Look Fantastic - at least 20% off with code LFBLACK on Black Friday and LFCYBER over the weekend
Marks & Spencer - up to 50% off selected items
Matalan - a whole page of Black Friday deals
Miss Selfridge - up to 50% off selected items (+ FREE delivery)
New Look - up to 50% off selected items
Office - 20% off EVERYTHING with the code WONDER (+ FREE delivery)
Peacocks - 20% off EVERYTHING/25% off EVERYTHING on Cyber Monday
River Island - different offers each day (+ a pretty massive sale)
Selfridges - between 10-20% off with the code SELFCCE
Sephora - gift sets from just $10
Stradivarius - 20% off EVERYTHING
Superdrug - up to 60% off + big savings on Zoella Beauty/Tanya Burr (+ extra money off if you're a Health & Beautycard holder)
Topshop - 50% off selected items (+ FREE delivery)
Truffle Shuffle - 20% off EVERYTHING with the code BLACKFRI
Urban Outfitters - 50% off selected items (+ £1 delivery)
Very - different deals each day (their Black Friday page is updated daily at 8am)
Wallis - up to 50% off
Whistles - 25% off selected lines

As someone who hasn't started their Christmas shopping yet, if you're the same, this could well be the perfect excuse to do so.

Have you bought anything in the Black Friday or Cyber Weekend sales? What do you think of my top picks? And have you started/finished your Christmas shopping yet?

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Wednesday, 16 November 2016

Planning My First Trip To New York


First trip to New York

To celebrate turning 25 next year, I've finally decided to do something that I've wanted to do for years now; I'm going to book my very first trip to New York.

Instead of waiting until I have a boyfriend (see my blog post on being forever single for more info) or until I can convince a friend to save up and take time off work to come with me, I've made the decision to go it alone. Even though I like to think of myself as an independent woman 'throw your hands up at me', I'm mainly used to family holidays and honestly, that's what has put me off booking a solo trip for quite some time. But on our last few trips, most of the travel logistics (searching for the cheapest flights, doing online check-in, securing theme park tickets, making sure we're at the airport/gate/rental car place on time, etc.) have been down to me. Staying at CitizenM Glasgow. last month, only reinforced this notion of solo travel being realistic. And I have to admit, I'm looking forward to doing what I want when I want, without having to wait on or consider others, as selfish as it sounds.

Ideally, I'm looking at the months of May or June of next year, as hopefully these months should offer a happy medium weather-wise. I'm also looking for as many tips as possible! Do I fly direct and save like crazy or do I go indirect and put the savings towards experiences when I'm there? Is 7 days too short or too long to spend in NY? Do I stay in or around Times Square since it's my first visit? Could I realistically do hand luggage only? Do I really need the New York CityPASS? These are all questions and I potentially have a whole lot more, that I'd be very grateful to get some advice on. So if you've been, know someone who has or read a great blog post/watched a brilliant YouTube video, I'd be forever grateful if you left your recommendations below or got in touch with me on Twitter.

I do have a general idea of what I'd like to see/do while I'm there, basically all the touristy stuff but I'd love to hear what else I should see, do, eat and marvel at in the Big Apple.

Have you ever visited New York? If so, can I have all your tips and advice please? Hehe. If not, is it on your 'to visit' list? And would you be interested in me blogging about my trip on my return?



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Sunday, 13 November 2016

The Look Fantastic #LFSparkle Beauty Box



Now that it's officially Winter (it was snowing here in Scotland this week), I feel like it's okay to finally get properly excited about all things Christmas without universal chants of 'IT'S TOO EARLY!' being shouted at you. And this month's Look Fantastic beauty box has anticipated that festive shift with their #LFSparkle box.

Straight away the sparkle theme became clearly apparent as I pulled out the glittery Look Fantastic nail file from the box. A nice touch for the Christmas party season. Then I spotted the Look Good Feel Better angled blending brush and got even more excited to delve into this month's offerings. The brush is such great quality and it really nestles into the eye socket well too. Next I uncovered two brilliant hair products, one of which I'd been dying to try. The L'Oreal Mythic Oil is as good as I'd hoped it would be and the Sebastian Professional Volupt spray is ideal for adding much needed volume to my roots, particularly over the holidays.

You'll also find a makeup item in this month's box and it's one that I think will work well for many different skin tones and colours. I'll definitely need to check out some more of Model Co's offerings after trying this.

And last but not least you'll find two products, both of which are ideal for the colder months. Monu's Soothing Touch Recovery Balm feels so lovely and hydrating on the skin, whilst the Bloom And Blossom Revitalising Foot And Leg Spray will certainly be coming with me the next time I travel. If you're visiting relatives this Christmas, be it by bus, plane, train, ferry or car, this spray is designed specifically to boost your circulation and leave you with a pleasant fragrance, one that's not always around on public transport.


Don't forget that you also get the latest copy of Elle magazine with each Look Fantastic beauty box, which is such a great deal. It also saves me buying it separately now.

I think a beauty box like this one would make for a great Christmas gift, especially if you know the person you're buying for is a fan of all things beauty or trying out new brands and products. You could even gift them a 3, 6 or 12 month subscription, if you're feeling particularly generous this holiday season.


What do you think of the #LFSparkle beauty box? Have you tried any of the products in this month's box? If so, what do you think of them? And are you starting to get excited for Christmas now?




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